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2020 Soybean Performance Trials – Yield Data for Henry, Clinton, and Preble Counties

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff. Adapted from C.O.R.N. 2020-37

The 2020 Soybean Yield Results have been tabulated, and are available from the Soybean Performance Trials for Henry, Clinton, and Preble Counties. The purpose of the Ohio Soybean Performance Trials is to evaluate soybean varieties for yield and other agronomic characteristics. This evaluation gives soybean producers comparative information for selecting the best varieties for their unique production systems each year.

The entries for each test site were planted in a randomized complete block design. Each entry was replicated four times and planted in plots 28 ft long and 5 ft wide containing four rows seeded at 15-inch row width.

The seeding rate was 150,000 seeds per acre. Corn was the previous crop at all locations except in Mercer County where a cover crop was planted into a 2019 prevent plant field.

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NCGA program seeking teachers for a national leadership experience

National Corn Growers Association is working to recognize the importance of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in schools and to the future of agriculture.

NCGA believes agriculture is a vital partner in engaging students in STEM concepts in ways that directly and indirectly impact their lives and the lives of farmers. Not only does teaching an ag-based curriculum in the science classroom inspire students to solve real-world science issues, reaching students is critical to address the job gap in agriculture-related careers, many of which go unfilled.

NCGA and its state corn checkoff programs began investing in making the latest teaching materials and teacher training available nationwide before COVID but quickly shifted gears to more virtual tools with the emergence of the pandemic. If you want to see how checkoff support is helping teachers go to

NCGA is in the second year of investing state corn checkoff dollars in the STEM-oriented initiative called Nourish the Future and is recruiting teachers to participate in the 2021 program.… Continue reading

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November WASDE Bullish

By Doug Tenny, Leist Mercantile

USDA today projected the US corn production at14.507 billion bushels and the US corn yield at 175.8 bushels per acre. Last month US corn production was 14.722 billion bushels and the yield was 178.4 bushels per acres. This month the US soybean production was 4.170 billion bushels and the US soybean yield was 50.7 bushels. Last month the US soybean production was 4.268 billion bushels and the US soybean yield was 51.9 bushels per acre.

Corn ending stocks were 1.702 billion bushels, down 331 million bushels. Soybean ending stocks were 190 million bushels, a decline of 100 million bushels. Corn exports up 325 million bushels with soybean exports unchanged. China corn imports up 6 million tons to 13 million tons.

Shortly after the report was released, corn was up 11 cents, soybeans up 27 cents, and wheat up 10 cents. Just before the report release, corn was up 4 cents, soybeans up 13 cents, and wheat up 8 cents. … Continue reading

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Ohio State Agricultural Policy and Outlook Conference – Day One Recap

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff.

Agricultural Financial Conditions and an Outlook for 2021 were the topics of Day one of the 2020 Agricultural Policy and Outlook Conference sponsored and hosted by The Ohio State University Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics.

Dr. Ani Katchova, Associate Professor and Farm Income Enhancement Chair began the program by discussing overriding themes in current farm income and the finance outlook.

“U.S. net farm income and net cash income are forecast to increase for 2020, which is a fourth consecutive year,” said Katchova. “This growth in farm income is mainly driven by higher government payments, while livestock receipts are expected to be lower as we close out 2020.”

Farm income in Ohio has been 2.4 – 2.5% of U.S. farm income but with higher volatility over the last decade.

“U.S. net cash income is forecast to increase by 4.5% and U.S.… Continue reading

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Corn harvest still running behind

Low amounts of precipitation made way for more field activity throughout the week, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated 88% adequate to surplus by week’s end, down 3 percentage points from the previous week. Average temperatures for the week were 4.8 degrees above historical normals and the entire State averaged 0.7 inches of precipitation. There were 6.2 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending Nov. 8.

During the week, farmers hauled manure and harvested crops. Soybeans were 87% harvested by week’s end, four percentage points less than the five-year average of 91%, while soybeans moisture content was at 13%. Corn harvested was at 64% compared to the five-year average of 76%. Corn moisture content decreased by 2 percentage points to 20%. Winter wheat planted reached 100%. Fifty-one percent of corn was rated good to excellent condition compared to 37% the previous year and 68% of winter wheat was rated good to excellent condition.… Continue reading

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Farmers taking advantage of great harvest weather

Charlie Kail

There is more corn standing out in the field than I thought there should be with the weather we have had. We have had straight runs of fantastic harvest weather. A couple of guys have been telling me that the corn is just too wet. My response to them is that the deer and the raccoons are getting it instead because they don’t mind if it is a little wetter.

I had one guy tell me he was running 11 bushels per acre and then a minute later he was running 240. When you have that kind of variation in yields you are going to have moisture that varies too. There will be corn moisture at 17% up into the 23% or 24% range. When I was a kid we couldn’t get corn below 22%. The new hybrids obviously dry down a lot better than the old ones did.… Continue reading

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Ag organizations lay groundwork to start work with Biden Administration

After several days of ballot counting and much anticipation, the Associated Press announced that former Vice President Joe Biden had won the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

“The last four years haven’t been too kind to family farmers and ranchers. Overproduction, rampant corporate consolidation, trade disputes, and climate change have kept commodity prices stubbornly low, causing farm debt to balloon and farm bankruptcies to proliferate,” said Rob Larew, National Farmers Union (NFU) president. “On the campaign trail, President-elect Joe Biden has indicated that he intends to address many of the concerns we have expressed over the last several years. He has promised to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement as well as provide farmers and ranchers the tools they need to implement climate-smart practices, both of which are top priorities for Farmers Union members. Additionally, Biden has outlined his commitment to revitalize rural economies, enforce antitrust regulation, strengthen the Affordable Care Act, alleviate racial inequities in agriculture, expand rural broadband, and promote homegrown biofuels.… Continue reading

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There is no security quite like food security

By Matt Reese

This time of year farmers around the state are working feverishly around the clock (and the weather) to get the last fields of corn and soybeans harvested and safely in the bin before the harshest winter weather sets in. Along with this accomplishment, comes a special feeling of deep satisfaction unique to farms. It is the completion of a year of planning, investment and long hours. Similarly, getting a mow filled with hay in summer’s waning days feels pretty good and there is also something very comforting about amassing an impressive pile of fire wood before the first snow of the season.

Beyond the farm community, though, these things simply do not compare to a feeling of having a nice stockpile of food for your family as winter arrives. For the Reeses, the 4-H turkeys, chickens, lambs, and pigs have been processed, I just got a quarter of a steer from my brother and the freezer is full of meat as we head into winter.… Continue reading

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The power of rural health in Ohio

By Dee Jepsen and Laura Akgerman

National Rural Health Day is Thursday Nov. 19, 2020. This day highlights the unique challenges rural communities face when it comes to health services and healthy people.

Focusing on the Power of Rural is the theme for this year’s campaign

Ohio has a State Office of Rural Health (SORH), which serves as the anchor of information and support for rural communities. They advocate strengthening health care delivery systems through their resources and programs, and encourage recruitment and retention of health professionals in rural areas. Visit their website at

In addition to the good work done by SORH, Ohioans can connect with other rural health advocates and providers by joining The Ohio Rural Health Association, an advocacy organization which works closely with SORH, and offers resources, educational and networking opportunities for ORHA members. ORHA’s missions is to enhance the health and well-being of the state’s rural citizens and communities.… Continue reading

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USDA releases farm production expense forecast for 2020

By Chris Zoller, Ohio State University Extension Educator, ANR in Tuscarawas County

The United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service (USDA-ERS) has announced their prediction for farm production expenses for 2020. Production expenses are projected to be reduced by 1.3% to $344.2 billion in nominal (non-inflation-adjusted) dollars. These expenses represent the costs of all inputs used to produce farm commodities and affect farm profitability. While overall production expenses are forecast to decrease, specific expenses vary.

USDA-ERS estimates expenses to increase in 2020 account for 69% of total expenses. The two largest expense categories, feed and labor, are expected to increase 1.4% and 3.1%, respectively. Expenses expected to decrease in 2020 account for 31% of all production expenses. Specific examples of expense items expected to decrease include interest expenses (27.1%), fuel and oil (13.9%), livestock and poultry purchases (7.5%), and pesticides (2.1%).

Inflation-adjusted total production expenses in 2020 are expected to be 19% below the record high of $427.1 billion in 2014.… Continue reading

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OSU Agricultural Policy and Outlook Conference this week

Farmers in Ohio and across the Midwest might have reason to be optimistic this year.

Prices for soybeans, corn, and wheat have risen in 2020, and total net cash income from farms in the United States is expected to be up this year by 4.5%. That’s partly because of an increase in government payments to farmers.

Those payments will make up 32% of this year’s net cash income from all U.S. farms—more than double the portion those payments typically account for, said Ben Brown, an assistant professor of agricultural risk management at the The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES). 

Traditionally, government assistance to farmers has made up about 14% of the annual net cash income from farms in the United States. Net farm cash income is a measure of profit generated from all U.S. farms by adding all sales of agricultural commodities and farming-related activities, plus direct government payments, and subtracting cash expenses.  … Continue reading

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China buying bolsters prices

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

The strong China buying bonanza for U.S. soybeans and U.S. corn the last several months has been instrumental in the price gains seen for January soybeans from July to the end of October. Summer lows were $8.40 for January CBOT soybeans. December CBOT corn had a low this summer of $3.20. During much of the early growing season there was much press about China not meeting the goals of purchasing $36 billion of U.S. agricultural goods. By the end of October it was estimated they had purchased at least 30 million tons (1.1 billion bushels) of U.S. soybeans. 

In addition, analysts are suggesting China could be purchasing 20 million tons of U.S. corn. China recently issued additional corn import licenses, above the first round of import licenses of seven million tons. They were a buyer of U.S. corn numerous times in October. Many are anticipating U.S. corn and U.S.… Continue reading

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NCGA working to grow corn demand through new uses

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) has held two Consider Corn Challenge contests, garnering nine winners with unique technologies that would improve a product or process by using field corn to produce biobased materials. If all nine of the Consider Corn Challenge winners reached full commercialization with products available in the marketplace, the potential for additional corn demand would be approximately 2.9 billion bushels.

“The team is discussing having another Consider Corn Challenge because we know there is still a lot of untapped potential out there, and researchers have new and innovative ideas to bring to the table using corn as an industrial feedstock,” said Dan Wesely, NCGA Market Development Action Team (MDAT) and Nebraska farmer. “This is an important area of focus because it will set us up for driving corn demand long-term.”

Previous Consider Corn Challenge winners have recently received more funding for their technologies. ExoPolymer announced the Investment Group of Santa Barbara (IGSB) is providing seed money to help them continue to conduct research for targeted markets.… Continue reading

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Planning weddings, showers and events in 2020

By Shelly Detwiler, berry farmer and dietician

K-i-s-s-i-n-g! First comes love. Next comes marriage. Then comes baby in the baby carriage. It’s true. What we learned on the playground has come second circle. Paul and I are in that seasoned time of life when weddings and babies are coming fast and furious. It’s a good thing I love to plan and host parties for these life celebrations.

Next comes marriage…

Weddings and showers are a HUGE part of today’s marriage culture and COVID has put a damper on these events. Smaller gatherings, postponements and two-step weddings are being planned. Son 1, semi-escaped the COVID wrath with a February “destination wedding” in South Dakota. Hallelujah there was no blizzard! Paul and I wanted to host a Buckeye Bash celebration back in Ohio. We decided on an end of August date for the “I do BBQ,” anticipating that the mandates by the State would let up.… Continue reading

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Cover crop management

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services.

As fall harvest progresses, farmers are looking ahead to next year’s crop.  Farmers utilizing no-till and/or cover crops may need to make different management decisions than conventional tillage farmers.  Consider the following tips for managing cover crops and making fertilizer adjustments.

Legumes and clover cover crops are usually planted before corn because they make nitrogen (N).  Legumes and clovers maximize N production (85-90%) at blooming, so terminate these cover crops before they set seed and the N is ties up. Most organic N is in the leaves and becomes available to the next crop 2-5 weeks after they decompose.

Jim Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

Most no-till farmers add 40-60# N in a corn starter to stimulate early corn growth, when soil microbial communities are lower and recovering after a cold winter. Microbial populations increase exponentially with moisture and warmer soils in late spring and early summer, recycling soil nutrients to the next crop.

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National recognition for Ohio county farm bureaus

The American Farm Bureau Federation County Activities of Excellence awards celebrate unique, local, volunteer-driven programs that serve as models of innovation for local program development. The winning counties receive a grant to fund participation in the Farm Bureau CAE Showcase at the 2021 American Farm Bureau Annual Convention and Trade Show in January. AFBF received more than 60 entries across all membership categories, with only 12 activities nationwide being selected to present at the convention.

“Once again, Ohio has more CAE winners than any other state,” said Melinda Witten, Ohio Farm Bureau senior director, leadership development. “We are always proud of the county Farm Bureau programming in Ohio, but we are thrilled to see five counties recognized at the American Farm Bureau level.”

Here are Ohio’s winners.

Delaware and Pickaway counties: Farms to food banks

The counties purchased 43 head of locally raised hogs and beef cattle from member-producers and junior fair exhibitors.… Continue reading

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Ohio brothers make aquaculture dream a reality

By Madi Kregel, OCJ field reporter

It’s uncommon to find local Ohio seafood, but the Waldock brothers have found a way to produce seafood locally nearly 600 miles from the closest ocean.

Buckeye Seafood Company in Wood County produces fresh shrimp and tilapia for retail. The aquaculture operation was added to diversify the family’s 300-acre vegetable production operation in Wood County by brothers Jack and TJ Waldock, who share a lifelong love of fish and seafood.

“We’ve loved fishing forever,” Jack Waldock said. “We always wanted to do aquaculture. When we were younger, we wanted to do tilapia but there was a heavy start up price. Our dad steered us that way and when we were in high school we went and toured a tilapia and perch facility. We were always looking for something different to do and shrimp came up. After years of planning, we pulled the trigger and got started.… Continue reading

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American Forage and Grassland Council will hold hybrid conference in 2021

By Chris Penrose, OSU Morgan County Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources, and President Elect, American Forage and Grassland Council

In response to feedback, the American Forage and Grassland Council (AFGC) Board of Directors has made the decision to host a hybrid conference in January 2021. This means there will be two events, one in-person and one virtual, on two separate dates. The Board felt this approach met the feedback received and allows members and attendees the option to choose the event structure that best fit their comfort level.

The AFGC Annual Conference will be held in-person January 3 through Jan. 6 at the Hyatt Regency in Savannah, Georgia and the AFGC Virtual Conference will be held January 11 and 12, 2021. The content offered in person will be recorded and available at the virtual event and the virtual will include sessions by presenters who made the decision to present remotely.… Continue reading

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Fall cover crops

By Sarah NoggleRachel Cochran, Ohio State University Extension

It is time for planting fall cover crops. Cover crops can serve many purposes, ranging from erosion control to nutrient sequestration. Depending on the type and species of cover crop, benefits range from providing a nitrogen source, scavenging nutrients to decrease leaching potential, acting as a soil builder, preventing erosion, fighting weeds, acting as a forage, conserving soil moisture, and enhancing wildlife habitats.


  • Can be used as a nitrogen source due to their ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen into the soil
  • Many have good or excellent forage value, such as many clover species, alfalfa, and winter pea


  • Many are good weed-fighters, such as turnips, oilseed radish, and mustards
  • Many have good grazing and forage value, such as canola, turnips, and oilseed radish


  • Good erosion fighter due to fibrous root systems
  • Many have excellent grazing or forage value
  • Good nutrient scavenger due to vast root system

Cover crops can be seeded in ways to fit any operation.… Continue reading

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Veterans defended this country and now serving through agriculture

By Natalie Monroe, communications director of the Farmer Veteran Coalition

Many veterans return home feeling lost, without purpose.

They seek that “new mission” they grew accustomed to during their time in the military.

When the Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC) was founded in 2008 by Michael O’Gorman in the back of his pick-up truck, no one was connecting veterans with the farming community. He thought he could help them have meaningful careers on our nation’s farms. Today there are more than 250 organizations supporting this military-to-agriculture movement.

A national non-profit, FVC helps veterans pursue careers in agriculture. For these men and women, farming has become their new mission. The FVC mission — mobilizing veterans to feed America — is rooted in our belief that veterans possess the character needed to create sustainable food systems and strengthen rural communities. We recognize that agriculture additionally offers purpose, opportunity, and physical and psychological benefits. For many, this makes the difference in their civilian re-integration.… Continue reading

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